• 10 Best External Hard Drives in 2022 (Seagate, Buffalo, and More) 1
  • 10 Best External Hard Drives in 2022 (Seagate, Buffalo, and More) 2
  • 10 Best External Hard Drives in 2022 (Seagate, Buffalo, and More) 3
  • 10 Best External Hard Drives in 2022 (Seagate, Buffalo, and More) 4
  • 10 Best External Hard Drives in 2022 (Seagate, Buffalo, and More) 5

10 Best External Hard Drives in 2022 (Seagate, Buffalo, and More)

Have you ever gotten annoyed at the notification from your computer telling you that you're running out of space? This is where external hard disk drives, or HDDs, come in handy! But since there are a ton of them out in the market which can make deciding which to buy difficult, we've done all the research about how to choose the best ones for you.

For our top 10 list, we especially liked Western Digital's My Book Desktop External Hard Drive for its dual-drive option that's perfect for backup mirroring. We've also chosen nine more noteworthy options and created a buying guide to help you get acquainted with all there is to know about choosing a particular HDD.

Featured in this article

mybest US Editors
  • Last updated: 08-17-2022
Table of Contents

How to Choose an External Hard Drive – Buying Guide

External hard drives should be compatible with your existing operating system plus have enough storage space to meet your needs. 

Choose Functions That Match Your Needs

An external hard drive (HDD, or hard disk drive) used to be just used to save data. But nowadays, with people starting to use external hard drives for so many more tasks such as memory archiving and data sharing, it’s important to find one that meets your particular needs. Let’s take a look at some key items to check off the list when shopping.

Share Data With Multiple Devices in a Home Network

Share Data With Multiple Devices in a Home Network

If you have a home network set up for sharing on your Wi-Fi router, you can grant access to the hard drive’s contents to any smartphone, tablet, or laptop. This feature is called NAS (network-attached storage), and it's becoming an essential feature in many home data systems. 


Grab a NAS-compatible HDD if you would like to access your hard drive from multiple devices. 

Mirroring Capabilities During Backups

Mirroring Capabilities During Backups

For those who are looking for an external HDD to back up data, it’s recommended that you prepare two identical HDDs and keep the content in both backups the same at all times. This way, should one of your backups get corrupted, you have a backup of the backup. 


Given that backing up files is a tedious task, mirroring capabilities let you secure your files on two devices simultaneously. It might be more expensive, but the security of valuable data usually outweighs the cost. Mirroring can be set up with free software, so you don’t need to be an expert to start making sure your data is never lost.


Some external hard drives have two hard drive partitions inside them and are set up for mirroring from the start. This is definitely useful for those who are considering using external hard drives to backup data.

Check to See if the HDD Matches Your Operating System

When choosing an external hard drive, it’s vital to double-check what operating system and what version of that system you’re running on your computer. If it’s not compatible, the hard drive will not be recognized by your device. Usually, the product listing will let you know, but it's always good to double-check what file system it uses.

NTFS and FAT32 Work Best on Windows

NTFS and FAT32 Work Best on Windows

HDDs are often pre-programmed to a particular format such as NTFS (New Technology File System), APFS (Apple File System), FAT32 (File Allocation Table), HFS+ (Hierarchical File system), and exFAT. 


If one system doesn't work for your computer, you'll need to reformat it to make it recognizable to read and write with your operating system. Luckily, most hard drives are reformattable; note, however, that reformatting an already used hard drive usually means deleting all the information written on it.


NTFS and FAT32 were originally developed for and works best on Windows OS' and, though NTFS can be read on Macs, you cannot write data onto a hard drive with NTFS on a Mac. FAT32, however, works with most operating systems, but it is an older file system and has storage limitations.

APFS and HFS+ are Mac Standards

APFS and HFS+ are Mac Standards

On the contrary, APFS and HFS+, which are native to Mac systems, cannot be read by Windows without a third-party app. Also, note that APFS can only be recognized by Macs running High Sierra or later.


Lastly, exFAT is a hard drive format recognizable by both Windows and Mac OS', making it the go-to choice of those who use these two operating systems.  


Also note that, though most external HDDs on the market are compatible with Windows 7 or Mac OS X and newer OS' today, when it comes to gaming consoles like Xbox or Playstation, we recommend looking through the product description and reviews to confirm if the HDD was recognizable by the console.

Pick Between a Desktop-Type or USB-Powered HDD

Another thing to keep in mind is the HDD design and whether it's made to stay at home on your desk or is portable so it can accompany you everywhere. The former typically has a sleek yet more sensitive design, while the latter is rugged and designed for outdoor use. 

Desktop-Type Drives are Good for Home Use

Desktop-Type Drives are Good for Home Use

A desktop-type drive is meant to stay at home. They typically have several USB ports and need to be plugged into a power outlet. They are usually much bigger than the notebook-class (portable or pocket) external hard drives and tend to weigh a bit more. 


However, though they might be bulkier in size, desktop-class HDDs typically have a large storage capacity, some even allowing up to 24TB. 

Choose a USB-Powered HDD for Mobility

Choose a USB-Powered HDD for Mobility

Notebook-type external hard drives are made for mobility. The body is lighter and smaller, and only requires a USB port for power. These HDDs are typically designed to be solid and sturdy for on-the-go use. 


When portable external hard drives first came into the market, they suffered from limited disk space, but nowadays, you can find many that have specs comparable to the stationary kind. 


Some people also prefer a portable hard drive if they work with limited desktop space or simply want a cleaner look for their workspace. With that in mind, we recommend looking through the HDD's dimensions to see if it matches your needs.

Consider What Disk Space Size to Get Based on Your Usage Needs

Consider What Disk Space Size to Get Based on Your Usage Needs

When considering disk space, it really depends on what you're going to be using the hard drive for. If you're just planning on building upon your computer's storage or using the HDD as a USB to transfer files from one device to another, then anywhere from 64GB to 2TB is enough.


If you want even more space just in case, if you're planning on storing files for the long-term, or if you're packing in a ton of GB-heavy files like movies and games, then getting one that's over 1TB is your best option.


You'll likely want to consider whether you're sharing the disk with family or planning to use it for work, too, so we highly recommend choosing disk space with the future in mind. 

Find an HDD With Fast Transfer Speeds

The speed at which an external hard drive transfers data to your computer is limited by the type of port on the computer. If it’s an older standard like USB 2.0, you may find transferring data takes some time. 

Go for USB 3.0 and Above for the Best Wired Connection on PC

Go for USB 3.0 and Above for the Best Wired Connection on PC

USB 3.0 is ten times faster than the previous version (USB 2.0) and will have no problem transferring seamlessly. Note that you'll find labels such as USB 3.1 and 3.2 (Gen 1 or 2) now, with 3.2 being doubly as fast as 3.0s, though 3.0s are still the most common.


To enjoy the fastest transfer speeds, check to see if your computer's port runs on USB 3.0 tech and pair it with a USB 3.0 HDD. Using a USB 3.0 external hard drive on a computer port with the lower version would only perform to the latter's maximum capacity. A quick way to check existing ports is to look at the color. USB 3.0 ports are typically blue

Thunderbolt 3 is the Fastest Option for Mac Users

Thunderbolt 3 is the Fastest Option for Mac Users

For Mac users, there's Thunderbolt, which is even faster than USB 3.0, transferring at speeds eight times faster than USB 3.0s, provided you're using a Thunderbolt 3. Unfortunately, not many PCs offer this option unless it has a USB-C port, for which you can buy an adaptor for. 


On the other hand, Thunderbolt 2 (20 Gbps, comparable to USB 3.2) and 1 (10 Gbps, comparable to USB 3.1) are for Apple products only and still run at pretty reliable speeds. Note that they are not backward compatible, though, as they use different cables than Thunderbolt 3s do.


We also recommend looking through the reviews if the cables that the HDD comes with match the device's capabilities. A poorly-made or loosely-fitting cable can cause intermittent performance. For other issues, an HDD with a warranty gives you an assurance that you can get technical support or replacements. 

10 Best External Hard Drives

Here are a few hard drives we've chosen based on reviews, ranking, and the features they offer. 

Image
1
Western Digital My Book Desktop External Hard Drive 1

Western Digital

2
La Cie Rugged Thunderbolt External Hard Drive 1

La Cie

3
Buffalo MiniStation Extreme 1

Buffalo

4
Maxone Ultra Slim Portable External Hard Drive 1

Maxone

5
G-Technology External Hard Drive 1

G-Technology

6
Silicon Power Rugged Portable External Hard Drive  1

Silicon Power

7
Seagate Backup Plus Slim 1

Seagate

8
Toshiba Canvio Basics 1TB Portable Hard Drive 1

Toshiba

9
Seagate Expansion Desktop 8TB External Hard Drive 1

Seagate

10
Western Digital Elements Portable External Hard Drive 1

Western Digital

Name

My Book Desktop External Hard Drive

Rugged Thunderbolt External Hard Drive

MiniStation Extreme

Ultra Slim Portable External Hard Drive

External Hard Drive

Rugged Portable External Hard Drive

Backup Plus Slim

Canvio Basics 1TB Portable Hard Drive

Expansion Desktop 8TB External Hard Drive

Elements Portable External Hard Drive

Features

A Hard-Drive With Dual Drive Option for Backup Mirroring

A Versatile, Portable Hard Drive With Military-Grade Shock Resistance

Extra Security to Protect Your Files

A Slim, Sleek, and Safe Hard Drive

An Amazing Desktop-Type External Hard Drive for Mac Users

Perfect for Gamers and Can Take a Beating if Dropped

A Thin and Versatile Hard Drive for the Working Professional

The Plug-and-Play Portable Hard Drive

This Desktop Hard Drive Has Loads of Add-On Capacity

A Reliable Industry-Standard Hard Drive

Price$89.99$314.49$84.64$52.99$319.95$49.99$109.00$65.98$147.99$94.99
Capacity3TB (more options available)2TB1TB (2TB option available)1TB (more options available)10TB (more options available)1TB (more options available)2TB (more options available)1TB8TB (more options available)4TB (more options available)
InterfaceUSB 3.0/2.0USB 3.0USB 3.0USB 3.0/2.0USB 3.0USB 3.0USB 3.0USB 3.0/2.0USB 3.0/2.0USB 3.0/2.0
File systemexFATNot providedNTFSFAT32Not providedMS-DOS (FAT) (FAT32)NTFSNTFSNot provided (can be formatted upon startup)NTFS
Compatible withPC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up)PC (Windows 7 and up), best on Mac (OS X and up)PC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up)PC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up), gaming consolesBest for Mac (OS X and up), works for PC (Windows 7 and up), TV, and gaming consoles if reformattedPC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up), gaming consolesPC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up), game consolesPC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up)PC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up, if reformatted)PC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up, if reformatted), game consoles (Playstation, Xbox)
Dimensions5.50 x 1.90 x 6.70 in.3.50 x 0.98 x 5.51 in.5.55 x 3.54 x 0.83 in.4.7 x 3.3 x 0.4 in.9.25 x 5.12 x 1.89 in.5.50 x 3.40 x 0.90 in.4.47 x 2.99 x 0.48 in.4.70 x 3.10 x 0.59 in.6.93 x 4.75 x 1.44 in.4.35 x 3.23 x 0.83 in.
Warranty3 years3 years3 years3 years3 years3 years2 years1 year1 year 2 years
Link
1

Western DigitalMy Book Desktop External Hard Drive

WDBBGB0030HBK-NESN

$89.99

Capacity3TB (more options available)
InterfaceUSB 3.0/2.0
File systemexFAT
Compatible withPC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up)
Dimensions5.50 x 1.90 x 6.70 in.
Warranty3 years
2

La CieRugged Thunderbolt External Hard Drive

STEV2000400

$314.49

Capacity2TB
InterfaceUSB 3.0
File systemNot provided
Compatible withPC (Windows 7 and up), best on Mac (OS X and up)
Dimensions3.50 x 0.98 x 5.51 in.
Warranty3 years
3

BuffaloMiniStation Extreme

HD-PZN1.0U3B

$84.64

Capacity1TB (2TB option available)
InterfaceUSB 3.0
File systemNTFS
Compatible withPC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up)
Dimensions5.55 x 3.54 x 0.83 in.
Warranty3 years
4

MaxoneUltra Slim Portable External Hard Drive

$52.99

Capacity1TB (more options available)
InterfaceUSB 3.0/2.0
File systemFAT32
Compatible withPC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up), gaming consoles
Dimensions4.7 x 3.3 x 0.4 in.
Warranty3 years
5

G-TechnologyExternal Hard Drive

0G05016

$319.95

Capacity10TB (more options available)
InterfaceUSB 3.0
File systemNot provided
Compatible withBest for Mac (OS X and up), works for PC (Windows 7 and up), TV, and gaming consoles if reformatted
Dimensions9.25 x 5.12 x 1.89 in.
Warranty3 years
6

Silicon PowerRugged Portable External Hard Drive

Armor A60

$49.99

Capacity1TB (more options available)
InterfaceUSB 3.0
File systemMS-DOS (FAT) (FAT32)
Compatible withPC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up), gaming consoles
Dimensions5.50 x 3.40 x 0.90 in.
Warranty3 years
7

SeagateBackup Plus Slim

STDR2000100

$109.00

Capacity2TB (more options available)
InterfaceUSB 3.0
File systemNTFS
Compatible withPC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up), game consoles
Dimensions4.47 x 2.99 x 0.48 in.
Warranty2 years
8

ToshibaCanvio Basics 1TB Portable Hard Drive

HDTB310XK3AA

$65.98

Capacity1TB
InterfaceUSB 3.0/2.0
File systemsNTFS
Compatible withPC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up)
Dimensions4.70 x 3.10 x 0.59 in.
Warranty1 year
9

SeagateExpansion Desktop 8TB External Hard Drive

STEB8000100

$147.99

Capacity8TB (more options available)
InterfaceUSB 3.0/2.0
File systemNot provided (can be formatted upon startup)
Compatible withPC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up, if reformatted)
Dimensions6.93 x 4.75 x 1.44 in.
Warranty1 year
10

Western DigitalElements Portable External Hard Drive

WDBU6Y0040BBK-WESN

$94.99

Capacity4TB (more options available)
InterfaceUSB 3.0/2.0
File systemNTFS
Compatible withPC (Windows 7 and up), Mac (OS X and up, if reformatted), game consoles (Playstation, Xbox)
Dimensions4.35 x 3.23 x 0.83 in.
Warranty2 years

Data Storage and Power Essentials

Data Storage and Power Essentials

Electronics are a huge part of our everyday lives now, but we can never seem to have enough space or enough plugs to charge all those pesky devices! Here are a few more links to check out if you're looking to expand your data filing systems or charging essentials. 

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    Do you avoid using hair dryers, since they tend to sap all the moisture from your hair, making it difficult to style it? Are you tired of loud hair dryers that still take forever to dry your hair? Do you simply want more functionality out of your hair dryer? While many people think using a hair dryer is bad for you, attributing it to hair damage and even breakage, modern Japanese hair dryers have worked around this problem, not only drying your hair but also keeping it lush and beautiful, even providing scalp care at the same time! Many manufacturers and brands have been churning out these more advanced hair dryers, from major brands like Panasonic and its Nano Care series to the higher-end options provided by brands such as Holistic Cure, and Ya-Man. Of course, there are also more accessible and affordable models from companies like Tescom and Koizumi. However, with each of these products providing many different features and perks, from hair care and stronger airflow for quicker drying to noise reduction and multiple settings, it can be overwhelming to figure out which hair dryer is the right one for you. To help solve this problem, we gathered and tested 65 best-selling Japanese hair dryers from popular e-commerce sites in Japan, like Amazon, Rakuten, and Yahoo! Shopping, and tested them all.We tested each product for the following:Drying speedFinishFeelThen, based on our tests, we ranked the 11 best Japanese hair dryers. We also put together a buying guide to help guide you through the process of finding the best Japanese hair dryer for your specific needs. Keep reading to learn more!
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